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You never know who you will meet on an airplane…

As the busiest traveling season of the year is upon us, I thought I would share a little story that happened to me just about a month ago.

At the airport. People coming and going, hurried, rushed and stressed. I cannot help but feel a tinge of anxiety every time I get ready to walk through the security line or board the tiny plane.

It is no wonder most people walk around with their ear plugs in or open their laptops to catch up on Facebook or twitter. We want to feel connected in a place of total strangers. Especially when traveling alone.

This last time I was with my daughter. I was anxious to get on the plane smoothly and not have her fussing and bugging everyone around us. I had my stroller set up- diaper bag backpack on, Lillian strapped into her car seat, snug in her travel stroller, and my boarding pass in my pocket. I had my plan. All I wanted to do was get on the plane, get a good spot, and worry about my daughter.

That is when I noticed her. Traveling alone, like me, but with a baby a bit older. She was a young mom braving the airport. She had no stroller, so she had her baby on her hip. A large diaper bag barely hung off her shoulder, and a giant blanket was dragging behind her as the baby barely hung onto a corner of it. I knew what that might feel like and instantly wanted to talk to her. I was nervous about it though…what if she wanted to be left alone or thought I was some weirdo.

I started some small talk, asking her how old her baby was, commenting on her babies’ beautiful red hair… then let her know she could sit by me if she wanted. Wait, what did I  just tell her!? I remember instantly feeling like a fool… now would she sit by me out of obligation, would we have to talk the whole time, what if she didn’t sit by me, would I feel rejected? Oh well, I put it out there. She didn’t say anything in response.

So we boarded the plane. Sure enough, she sits next to me. I will never forget the faces of the business man and women behind us as we took up the seats in front of them. Sheer terror. Almost comical. They are just babies, people! So there we sat. Lillian in her car seat, myself in the middle, and Mom and baby next to us almost squished into the aisle.

The babies started squealing with delight, and making those shrill screams that are cute only to the parents holding them. Oh, oh what had I done?! We should have split up and made this easier on everyone.

However, the babies calmed down and loved looking at each other. Our conversation was not at all contrived or forced. Rather, I was intrigued by this loving young mother and her baby. We talked about life, our kids, and despite our age gap had much in common. My heart ached for her as she told me she was new to a big city, with no friends, and with a young baby. I know how hard that is because not too long ago I was there too. Yes, she has some family here, but sometimes you need friends that are in your place in life, too.

I felt like a freak asking for her phone number, but I felt like I needed to. I felt some strange connection to her. See, I have a passion for working with young moms, and knew I could help her connect with others out there just like her. I wanted so bad to invite her to Bible Study but was scared out of my mind to. So I did. And she was happy I did!

Fast forward to her joining me at a Younglives Bible Study, a full day of cookie making and baby play dates, and a dinner she invited me too and we have become friends. Her mother in law almost cried telling me how happy she was her daughter made a new friend, someone she could take the baby out with and just have fun. Her boyfriend and I have met several times, and I have loved getting to know her sweet family.

God showed up on that airplane that day. He wanted us to meet, and he made a divine appointment for us that we didn’t even realize.

I love being reminded that even in this busy and disconnected age we live in, God still has us cross paths with people we are meant to befriend. People that need our friendship and love at that moment, regardless of race, age, ethnicity, or status. People that we need for healing, help, and love. This has happened to me too often to disregard as fate or chance. I have met some of my best friends in the most unlikely of places, and I know it is God behind the scene pulling the strings.

See, I had been praying for a friend just like her. And God, with his great love and perfect timing, introduced me to her in the wildest of places- the airplane.

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  • Reply futurehope

    what a sweet story! I’m so glad you had the guts to talk to her. I always want to do things like that, but usually I chicken out. Maybe next time I will go ahead and give it a whirl. Thanks for sharing!!!

    December 19, 2012 at 7:52 pm
  • Reply Sybil@PeaceitallTogether

    This is an awesome story! Imagine what would have happened if you hadn’t listened to that prompting, that only could have come from God. You could have missed the opportunity for a great friendship. This story encourages me to continue to listen and respond to that still, small voice.

    December 19, 2012 at 7:56 pm
  • Reply meg

    This is so beautiful – it really made me smile. I love making friends in the most unusual ways. I hope you two (and your children) enjoy years of friendship!

    I love your blog and am your newest follower.


    December 19, 2012 at 10:01 pm
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Hi Meg! I am so glad you liked this post. I am following you back. Thanks so much for visiting.

      December 21, 2012 at 6:24 pm
  • Reply Marci Smith

    I love this story! What a wonderful reminder to do what God tells us to do. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    December 19, 2012 at 11:05 pm
  • Reply Courtney @ line up and wait

    As a former flight attendant, I am touched by this story. I love seeing relationships unfold, especially such a wonderful friendship story like this!

    December 20, 2012 at 12:49 am
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      So good to hear! I bet you saw all kinds of people and things happen!

      December 21, 2012 at 6:22 pm
  • Reply Tiffany H.

    What a very cool story! I am the kind of person that has a hard time just talking to someone I don’t know face to face. How brave of you! You showed the love of Jesus to that girl!


    December 20, 2012 at 1:04 am
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Hi Tiffany! I am following you back:). Thanks for the sweet comment!

      December 21, 2012 at 6:23 pm
  • Reply vickilicious

    Beautiful story. I admire daring people who follow their heart and/or instinct. Aren’t you glad you did?

    December 20, 2012 at 6:41 am
  • Reply Angie

    Hi! I found your blog via the Almost Friday Thursday blog hop. Such a beautiful story.

    December 20, 2012 at 7:41 am
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Hi Angie! Just visited your blog and am following back- what a cute design! Love it! Thanks again for visiting and for the compliment:).

      December 21, 2012 at 6:21 pm
  • Reply Bev

    hi, i following the “almost friday” blog hop. i would love for you to visit my blog and follow if you like it.

    new follower bev

    December 20, 2012 at 8:43 pm
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Hi! Thanks for visiting! I just followed you back;).

      December 21, 2012 at 6:20 pm
  • Reply LarasVintage

    Following you from the blog hop 🙂
    xx sandra

    December 22, 2012 at 3:30 am
  • Reply Kar @allmylove.mommy

    This is sooo sweet! I love reading about this kind of stuff.

    January 3, 2013 at 3:25 am
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